The house is quiet this morning.
Things are where we left them last night. There are no extra dishes or glasses in the sink, no more ‘surprise’ empty pop cans on the counter to be recycled.
After a month of staying with us, John’s son, my stepson has gone back to his university town. I’d mentioned that he was staying with us and that during that time we also hosted additional guests. For a month the house was busy. We fell back into the cadence of living with people other than just we two pretty easily. Meals were made and enjoyed (some more than others), laundry was done with ever increasing volume, and groceries were replenished with equal frequency.
Was the visit entirely smooth? Is any 18yr old’s month long visit with parents entirely smooth? If it is, I’d like to meet that family because I have questions. I’d say he was annoyed with us as often as we were with him and that feels totally normal to me.
But now, it’s quiet
Here we are, a day has gone by since we dropped him and his friend back off at the airport. They have flown, stopped over, been delayed, flown again and landed safely back in the town they now refer to as home. They are very successfully extricating themselves from the role of child to the role of adult. It is my most recent reminder that everything is temporary.
Joy. Sorrow. Fun times and times you would sooner wish away than live through. It is all fleeting. Whatever feeling of angst you may be having about an upcoming meeting or a conversation you may have to have, it will come and go as surely as the bliss you feel when you’re spending time with your best friend.
I remember when my youngest son was small and still would climb into bed with his father and me, usually very early in the morning. His dad would grumble to me about ‘why can’t we just tell him no’ or ‘does he have to come in so early?!’ And my response was always the same.
One of these times will be the last time and we won’t realize it when it happens.
And of course, it did happen. I don’t know the day or the month or the season. But I do know, like all wonderful things, like all things, it ended.
Today, the house is quiet. And I am taking time to equally enjoy the silence I have come to accept and feel the sadness of not hearing that big, thumping amble across the floor to get his morning juice.
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